The right food and diet is vital to keep your rabbits fit and healthy.
Rabbits’ natural diet
Rabbits have evolved as herbivores, so they naturally eat grass and plants.
In the wild they will graze for up to 16 hours a day to take on board enough nutrients to live.
Most of their time is spent grazing on low energy food such as grass, and a little bit of the time is spent on more succulent food such as dandelions.
Grazing in this way allows their constantly growing teeth to be kept in trim and ground down.
If at all possible you should make sure your rabbits can graze naturally.
Concentrated feeds may be well balanced, but they are not the best solution. It’s very easy to overfeed so your rabbits become overweight. Just a small amount of rabbit mix or pellets is sufficient.
Plenty of grass and hay is essential.
Plus give your rabbits vegetables, dandelions, lettuce leaves and herbs – and some fruit. They love anything green! Plus carrots of course.
Make sure you wash shop bought vegetables and wild plants first – and don’t pick wild plants from roadsides with heavy traffic, they can be very polluted.
Wild food… Garden plants
There are lots of wild plants rabbits can eat – but do beware of the poisonous one – including lots of garden plants. Please do check out our free guide for a full list.
Rabbits also get very bored if they can’t graze for long periods of time.
So natural feeding is the real key to your rabbit’s happiness, as well as his or her health.
Don’t worry if you see your rabbits eating sticky droppings, as this is natural – and helps them get the full nutrient value. They re-pass the initial droppings quite quickly and don’t eat them again.
Poor Nutrition – The Problems
This may surprise you, but poor nutrition accounts for a remarkably high percentage of the health problems we see in all pets, including rabbits. They include vomiting, diarrhoea, flatulence, obesity, dental problems, growth deformities, and heart, kidney and skin problems.
Finally, don’t forget that fresh clean water is essential – your rabbits should always have access to a good supply.
If you would like more advice on feeding your rabbits, please do book an appointment.